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Transition to OCS: Important dates to remember

posted Sep 10, 2013, 2:14 AM by Unknown user   [ updated Sep 10, 2013, 5:57 PM ]

Written by the OCS Steering Committee

The migration from the Institute’s old systems to OCS will soon begin. IRRI’s OCS team will need to move data from the old systems to OCS, and then shut down the old systems while activating OCS. While all of that is being done, user training sessions will be held across the Institute. The transition to OCS is a major undertaking. The key message from this note is that there will be, by necessity, a period of some disruption that the OCS team will work to keep to a minimum. The go-live date is set for 7 October 2013. So far, user acceptance testing has not thrown up any major problems. We do have some external dependencies, including delivery of training materials on time and Agresso Managed Services doing the final setup when required. DRPC and HRS are already using OCS for some functions. Most of the cutover work around the go-live date relates to finance and procurement. The critical period begins 16 September and runs to 7 October. During this period, only emergency requests can be accommodated and, when faced with large volumes of requests, service units will focus on high-priority items. Staff members are urged to plan accordingly, and contact respective units if they have questions regarding the important cut-off dates below. After OCS goes live on 7 October, we will all operate at our usual levels. The cut-off dates are:

  • 12 September 2013 for receipt of fully executed agreement from partners to enable fund transfer (DRPC, research).
  •  16 September 2013 for (a) the submission of purchase requests; (b) warehouse issuance, including consignment (SCS); (c) requests for payment, submission of TME reimbursement, and liquidation (AP section, FOP); and (d) requests for fund transfers to country offices for specific requirements, such as for workshops and/or partners (reporting sections, FPR/AP section, FOP).
  •  18 September 2013 for requests for travel/non-travel cash advances or benefits-related RAOT (AR Section, FOP). 
This means that cash advance requests for travel starting on or before 10 October should be received by 18 September to guarantee processing within the current (old) system. For travel after 10 October, requests should be prepared using OCS. Release of cash advance will be done in the usual manner. Similarly, all benefit claims requiring RAOT approval (home leave, compassionate leave, children’s educational travel) must be received by the finance team on or before 18 September. Requests received after this date will be processed under OCS, and payment will be made in the second week of October onwards. 
  • 20 September 2013 for (a) release of TME reimbursement (Cashier, FOP); (b) withdrawal from personal account (AR section, FOP); (c) request for budget realignment (planning section, FPR) and employee self-service or absence (HRS special projects).
  • 5 October 2013 for ID number creation for newly hired staff and short-term appointments (HRS-CBRS, HRS associates). 

As noted in prior briefing sessions, there is no option but to move to OCS as the current systems are running on borrowed time. The switch involves some disruption but the OCS team will do what they can to minimize these. The OCS team is counting on your understanding, patience, and cooperation during this very hectic period.